Decora Art and Colour
Another winner in SME1 Asia Awards in the Foreign Entrepreneurs SMEs category is Decora Art and Colour, which supplies and installs decorative finishes on walls and floors.
Its work can be seen in the casinos in Marina Bay Sands, one of the company’s largest projects so far.
Decora was started in 2009 by Mr. Luigi Sparacello, an Italia; and Mr. Matthew Drake, an American. Both owners had prior experience working in Macau and Hong Kong for eight years in the same line.
“We had worked in Asia previously and felt that Singapore was a good central base for operations,” explains Mr. Sparacello, director of Decora.
“Singapore is an easy place to start a company and to find and train skilled labour.”
Decora’s annual turnover is approximately $10 million and the company is driven by the enthusiasm of its staff.
“Our employees are passionate and enjoy being in a fun yet challenging environment of a start-up company,” says Mr. Sparacello. “May of them started with us from day one and have stayed with us through challenging times.”
For Decora, setting up an office in Singapore was easy but one main challenge they faced was finding and retaining talent for their niche painting service.
Mr. Sparacello says: “We found it impossible to find Singaporeans skilled in our speciality painting trade and had to import this labour despite trying to find and train locals.”
Other challenges include managing rental costs and foreign labour levels which the company tackled by taking on larger, long-term projects that ensured a constant influx of revenue.
Decora’s key achievement was securing a large-scale project for Marina Bay Sands within their first year of operations in 2009.
Mr. Sparacello says: “We grew quickly and were able to cope with the significant scale of this project. Decora Art carried out over 50,000 sq m of facade rendering, installing marble, veneers and painting the ceilings of the casino. It was a great achievement for us.”
The company aspires to become the premier decoration contractor for South-east Asia, based in Singapore.
“We are thrilled to win this award and to be recoginsed in Singapore,” says Mr. Sparacello. “Winning the award will allow us to share our business experience with other foreign entrepreneurs in Singapore.